In the land of lollies, what would your clothes be? What if hair was made with feathers and paper? What if an elephant had butterfly wings? What if you fell into a magical mirror and got stuck?
These are just some of the clever and creative ideas pondered by students at Holy Cross School, Trinity Park this term as part of an inventive and interactive writing stimulus activity.
The school’s Teacher Librarian Jo Neil and Leader of Teaching and Learning Deb Scarborough spent two days planning and constructing a trail of colourful stations around the library for students to explore on the first day of Term 4.
A tent, mirrored ladder, torches, pictures and large cardboard boxes were just some of many props used to trigger students’ creative ideas.
“Kids sometimes struggle with idea generation when they’re writing, so we wanted to create a writing stimulus trail for the kids so they can generate ideas back in the classroom, about whatever they want to write about,” Jo said.
“For some children, writing is not exciting. So we are trying to make it exciting, so they desperately want to go back and write.”
Teachers led their classes through the trail throughout the day, often linking up with another class so younger students could be guided by older children.
Deb said it was important for students to take part in the activity together so they could stimulate conversation and ideas.
“We really wanted to go multi-sensory, so students are using their eyes, using what they hear, hopping down on the ground so they’re getting a different perspective of what they’re doing,” she said.
“Each part can trigger something different for a different child. They’re able to see something and then go on a trail of thought. It’s not something they can just use from today; they will be able to come back and use the images and stimulus through the term.”
Holy Cross School Principal Sarah Hamilton said the ultimate purpose of day was to promote imagination.
“Our hope is that by the time every student has been through the library, that they will return to the classroom and the teachers can take the conversations in whatever direction is appropriate to whatever they are doing in the classroom,” she said.
“Both Jo and Deb are an absolute inspiration, they’re brilliant. We’re very lucky to have them here.”
You can learn more about Holy Cross School, Trinity Park here.